Q: "oil the dog's wig"?

Charles Doyle cdoyle at UGA.EDU
Tue Jan 22 13:18:04 UTC 2008

I am reminded (somehow) of an expression prevalent in my youth in Texas in the 1960s: to "wax (someone's) ass," meaning 'administer a sound beating'. It's probably in HDAS, but I own only one copy (alas), which is at home, where I am not . . . .


---- Original message ----
>Date: Mon, 21 Jan 2008 19:18:42 -0800
>From: Jonathan Lighter <wuxxmupp2000 at YAHOO.COM>
>Subject: Re: Q:  "oil the dog's wig"?
>"Dog" undoubtedly = S.O.B.  To "oil his wig" might mean to beat him on the head, possibly till blood flowed.
>  JL
>"Joel S. Berson" <Berson at ATT.NET> wrote:
>Is this of any interest, and how is it explained?
>In the 1784 _The Whimsical Jester: or, Rochester in High Glee_, there is a bit on jargon that allegedly "flew about" on the occasion of a boxing-match. One item is from the barber's speech: "oil the dog's wig for him".

The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org

More information about the Ads-l mailing list